Wakefield Council will be investing £13 million in improving and maintaining the district’s roads and footpaths over the next year if key decision-makers give it the go-ahead.
The annual road work programme is designed to maintain and improve the vast highway network. A key part of this is looking after main and estate roads which cover over 932 miles (1500km).
A spokesperson for Wakefield Council said; “A planned approach enables the Council to assess and prioritise the necessary work to prolong the life of the roads as well as respond to safety issues – delivering the best value for money for residents.
“A report before the Cabinet, on 25 April, outlines how the money would be spent and includes plans to ensure roads remain safe and to maintain and improve the district’s highways in all its forms – including roads, footways and footpaths, bridges and structures, drainage infrastructure and traffic signals.”
The programme also includes community-focused accessibility improvements that promote safer walking, cycling, and links with public transport, which will in turn support the climate change agenda.
£3 million will be spent this year on resurfacing estate roads, £1 million has been allocated for verge management to improve the safe and efficient use of the road and £650,000 has also been earmarked for signage to replace existing and missing signs, road marking and reflective studs.
Glynn Humphries, Wakefield Council’s Corporate Director for Environment, Communities and Climate Change, said: “Keeping our roads up to scratch is a top priority to keep everyone moving around our district.
“This investment allows us to deliver improvements that will be community-focused and that promote safer walking, cycling and links to public transport. These plans will reduce congestion and improve local air quality.
“It will also ensure our roads, footpaths and paths are as well-maintained as possible across our district. However, there will always be more that needs to be done and we will continue to prioritise those areas most in need.”
Funding for roads and transport in the region has shifted from the national government to the West Yorkshire City Region Sustainable Transport Settlement (CRSTS). This follows the election of the first West Yorkshire Mayor, Tracey Brabin. The process is still ongoing, but Wakefield Council has been advised they will receive £8.7 million to spend from April 2023 to April 2024.